BROOKLYN -- A press conference was scheduled to take place Thursday evening by "Communities in Support of KGIA" to call for the return of Khalil Gibran International Academy's (KGIA) embattled founding principal, Debbie Almontaser.
Sean Grogan, a teacher and UFT Chapter Leader at KGIA, said in a release early Thursday that Almontasser "not only brought with her a great knowledge of Arabic culture and language, but was also a bridge builder who was uniquely qualified to bring our communities together and to lead such a school."
Grogan and other supporters claim that KGIA "has been in great disarray" since Almontasser's departure in August. Almontasser claims she was forced to resign after she appeared to condone the inflammatory term "intifada."
Amy Schoenwald, an Almontasser supporter, said in the release, "The DOE's decision reflects educational policy based on anti-Arab and anti-Muslim racism."
On Jan. 8, the NYC Dept. of Education named Arabic-language scholar and educator Holly Anne Reichert as KGIA's new principal. Ms. Almontaser's lawsuit against the DOE will be heard before the Court of Appeals in the next two weeks.